What makes a good marketing asset? – Part 1: The Field Trip

True or false? “Life sciences marketing materials all look the same.” To challenge the hypothesis, I visited Labvolution (formerly known as Biotechnica) in Hannover.

Getting started was easy: Hop on the train, bring a large backpack and collect as many assets as possible. Everything beyond that will call for more brainwork: set analysis criteria, apply them to the diverse materials and hopefully come up with meaningful results.

But we’re not there yet. On a cloudy day in May, I stroll along the aisles, stopping at every booth (except the full ones, because I don’t want to disturb people doing real business), checking out displays. The first thing I notice is that flyers, brochures, printed materials are not dead yet. On the contrary. It’s a tough choice.

Booth staff was mostly happy to support my mission. For example, one lady showed me the result of a brochure redesign process. While the new version had a brighter and cleaner design, it was not popular with the sales team, she confided. Why? Because the content had been cut down from six to two pages, and a good deal of application data and background information was missing after the redesign.

Those were stimulating discussions that for sure will feed into our analysis once we get there. But today, I would like to share my very personal – 100% biased, no-financial-interest-involved – favorite asset collection.

For some reason, I liked the postcard format best. Maybe because the cards remind me of those you get for free in cafés or bars. They are easy to take along. And they can go viral in the good old analog way. Add a quirky comment and send them to a friend. Or stick them to the lab fridge for everyone to see.


Probably, that’s my first lesson learned. Think about what you are, who you are, and how you would like people to see you. Put yourself in the shoes of your audience. What’s your message? Can they understand it if they have never heard of your company or technology? Make it look nice & clean, but don’t sacrifice content for design. Write a headline that’s short and relevant. And - be yourself.

…to be continued…